Gen Z Insights

Your source for the latest Gen Z marketing trends and perspectives, presented by UNiDAYS.

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Every Gen Z stat you could ever ask for, right at your fingertips

by John Wheeler
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    Exploring Gen Z’s alternatives to university and what they mean for your brand

    For a generation that was already forging its own path, COVID-19 has added an entirely new fork in the road: whether or not to attend traditional...

    No matter your interest in Generation Z, here’s a list of crucial Z stats you won’t want to miss.


    You asked for it — so here it is.

    We’ve compiled key stats that we think speak to Gen Zers' needs, behaviors, quirks, attitudes, likes, dislikes and preferences as a cohort — consumer and/or otherwise.

    By putting all the number-crunching under one roof, it’s our hope you’ll gain convenient, global insight into what members of Gen Z are looking for in terms of brands, advertising, technology, shopping, content consumption, finances, leisure time and social causes.

    Without further ado, let’s do the numbers!

    What does Gen Z want from brands?

    • 65 percent of Gen Zs say they want real value for their money.1

    • 36 percent feel a strong loyalty or connection to a brand.1

    • 47 percent of Gen Zers who engaged with a brand feel dissatisfied or neutral about that brand’s response.1

    • 59 percent of Gen Zs trust the brands they grew up with.1

    • 44 percent of Gen Zs, if given the chance, would submit ideas for product designs.1

    • On average, Gen Zers share twice as much positive feedback to brands as they share negative feedback.1

    • 62 percent of Gen Zs find themselves attracted to brands they view as “fun or cool.”1 

    • 55 percent of Zs buy from brands they consider eco-friendly.1

    • 53 percent state their “favorite brand” is able to “understand them as an individual.”1

    • 45 percent are more favorable to brands that have been endorsed by celebrities or athletes.1

    • 76 percent of Gen Zers want brands to respond to their voices and feedback — and view "responsiveness" as a metric of a brand’s “authenticity.”1

    How does Gen Z feel about advertising?

    • The average Gen Zer's attention span for an ad is approximately eight seconds.13 

    • 56 percent of Gen Zers don’t click on ads when browsing websites.2 

    • 66 percent use only push notifications from certain apps, but not all. 2

    • 65 percent have installed some form of ad-blocking technology.3 

    • 66 percent skip online ads whenever they can.3

    • 12 percent are willing to pay for premium, ad-less services.3

    • 36 percent will “do something else” while a digital ad is playing.3

    • 20 percent of Gen Zers report that they “don’t mind [digital] ads.”3 

    • 47 percent of Gen Zers who have installed mobile ad-blocking technology state that the main reason for ad-blocking is “because ads interrupt me.”3

    • 41 percent of Gen Zers who have installed mobile ad-blocking technology state that the main reason for ad-blocking is “because ads slow down my phone.”3

    • 36 percent of Gen Zers who have installed mobile ad-blocking technology state that the main reason for ad-blocking is “because the ads aren’t relevant.”3

    • 53 percent of Gen Zers enjoy cinema advertising.3

    • 55 percent of Gen Zers enjoy outdoor advertising.3

    • 51 percent of Gen Zers enjoy print magazine advertising.3

    • 49 percent of Gen Zers enjoy newspaper advertising.3

    • 48 percent of Gen Zers enjoy TV advertising.3

    • 39 percent of Gen Zers enjoy radio advertising.3

    • 54 percent of Gen Zers feel positive about online branded content.3

    • 50 percent of Gen Zers respond well to ads placed in social news feeds.

    • 45 percent of Gen Zers engage readily with native advertising formats and articles.3

    What technologies does Gen Z use — and how?

    • 97.6 percent of Gen Zs own a smartphone across North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.2

    • Nearly one quarter (22 percent) of Gen Zs use their smartphones 10+ hours per day.4

    • 31 percent of Gen Zers don’t feel comfortable without having their phone for “30 minutes or less.”4

    • 94 percent own a laptop.2

    • 44.2 percent own a tablet.2

    • 36.9 percent own a gaming console.2

    • 30 percent own a desktop computer.2

    • 17.6 percent make use of some form of fitness tracker.2

    • 14.2 percent possess a Smartwatch.2

    • Only 3.5 percent of Gen Zs own virtual reality (VR) gear.2

    • 87 percent of Gen Zs have access to high-speed WiFi at home.5

    • 66 percent of Gen Zs report using more than one digital device simultaneously.5

    • 49 percent of Gen Zs feel better socializing online rather than offline.5

    • Fewer than 30 percent of Gen Zs are willing to share their personal health, wellness or financial information online.5

    • 58 percent of Gen Zs don’t trust Facebook with their personal data.2

    • 78 percent will entrust certain apps — though not all — to access their geo-locale.2

    • 60 percent of Gen Zers won’t use a website or app that’s too slow to load.5

    • 62 percent won’t use a website or app that’s hard to navigate.5

    • 73 percent of Gen Zers use their smartphones to text and chat with one another.5

    How does Gen Z shop?

    • As of 2018, Gen Zs have approximately $143 billion in total spending power.6

    • 41 percent of Gen Zers will read at least five online reviews before making a purchase.4

    • Only 15 percent of Gen Zers see themselves as shopping exclusively online in the future; 77 percent see themselves shopping in a mixture of in-store and online environments.7

    • 70 percent of Gen Zers report exerting an influence on their families’ purchasing decisions.5

    • 46 percent of Gen Zs follow “more than 10” social media influencers.4

    • 52 percent of Gen Zs are keeping track of at least three brands on social media.4

    • Gen Zs prefer following brands on Instagram to Facebook by a 250-percent factor.4

    • Gen Z prefers following brands on Instagram twice as much as Millennials.4

    • 70 percent of Gen Z remain consistently loyal to the brand of smartphone they purchase.4

    • 59 percent of Gen Zers show regular brand loyalty when it comes to electronics overall.4

    • Only 38 percent of Gen Zers display the same level of loyalty to clothing brands as they would to electronics or smartphones.4

    • 66 percent of Gen Zs will pay for music apps.2

    • 31 percent will pay for game and entertainment apps..2

    • 24 percent will pay for health and fitness apps.2

    • 18 percent will spend money on apps that increase their productivity or provide them with some other type of day-to-day organization and/or utility.2

    • 17 percent use apps to shop and browse.5

    • 66 percent of Gen Zers stress the importance of high-quality products and services above other considerations.5

    • 66 percent would rather do business at stores where “very few products” would ever be out of stock.5

    • 65 percent of Gen Z shoppers want “real value” for their money — and are more inclined to purchase when offered coupons, incentives or a rewards program.5

    • 56 percent stress the need for shopping experiences to “not be boring.”5

    • 46 percent say the recommendations of friends and family members play a significant part in making their financial decisions.5

    How does Gen Z consume content?

    • 28 percent of Gen Zers subscribe to cable TV.5

    • 61 percent have made the full crossover to digital streaming services.5

    • 83 percent of Gen Zs watch Netflix.5

    • 22 percent choose Amazon Instant TV.5

    • 18 percent opt for subscribing to YouTube TV.5

    • 77 percent of Gen Zs still read printed books regularly.2

    • 54.2 percent of Gen Zers tune into livestreamed events.2

    • 79.7 percent of Gen Zers receive their news via social media.2

    • 54.7 percent learn about the news from apps.2

    • 50.6 percent find out about news by watching television.2

    • 44.3 percent receive news from digital news sites and blogs.2

    • 19.2 percent get news updates from email newsletters.2

    • 12.7 percent read print media to learn about current events.2

    • A slight majority of Gen Zers report getting their news from laptops rather than smartphone, tablets, television or any other medium.2

    • 66 percent of Gen Zers don’t listen to podcasts.2

    • 74 percent of Gen Zers don’t watch Facebook Live or video streaming shows.2

    • 56 percent of Gen Zers share more videos than they share articles.8

    • 72 percent of Gen Zers cite “nighttime” as being the most frequent time of day when they watch video content.8

    How does Gen Z manage its finances?

    • 80 percent of Gen Zers cite “a higher salary” as the principle reason they want to go to college.9

    • 52 percent of Gen Zers are confident they’ll graduate from college with less than $25,000 US (or the equivalent) in accumulated debt.9

    • 73 percent of Gen Z students report having a job or a “side-hustle” to help pay for expenses.9

    • Only 35 percent of Gen Z students rely on government loans to help pay for college or university.9

    • 52 percent of Gen Zers don’t have credit cards.9

    • 72 percent of Gen Zs have already opened either a savings or checking account by the time they graduate high school.9

    • 54 percent of Gen Zers don’t plan on opening more than one bank account regardless of the incentive.9

    • 25 percent of Gen Zs report that a $100 (or equivalent) incentive would give them enough impetus to open another banking account.9

    How does Gen Z spend its free time?

    • 74 percent of Gen Zers prefer spending time online.5

    • 44 percent of Gen Zs enjoy watching non-digital TV and movies.5

    • 44 percent of Gen Zers would rather be hanging out with their friends.5

    • 44 percent of Gen Zers would equally enjoy spending time with their family.5

    • 29 percent of Gen Zs try to earn extra money.5

    • 25 percent of Gen Zs read books, magazines or newspapers.5

    • 23 percent of Gen Zers take part in extracurricular activities.5

    • 23 percent of Gen Zs would rather be exercising or otherwise staying fit.5

    • 22 percent of Gen Zers want to learn new things.5

    • 8 percent of Gen Zers spend time volunteering.5

    • 6 percent of Gen Zs participate in organized group activities.5

    • When traveling, 58 percent of Gen Zers would rather stay at hotels than either AirBnb or vacation rentals.10 

    What are the issues Gen Z cares about the most?

    • Roughly 53 percent of Gen Zers agree that “personal success” is the most important thing in life.11 

    • 93 percent of Gen Zers believe they're either “empowered” or “somewhat empowered” to shape "what [their] future will be".7

    • 68 percent of Gen Zs are concerned about the environment.7

    • 81 percent of Gen Zs are concerned about the costs of education.7

    • 63 percent of Gen Zs are concerned about jobs and unemployment.7

    • 35 percent of Gen Zs perceive terrorism as an important issue of its time.7

    • 72 percent of Gen Zs view access to healthcare as a top concern.7
    • 70 percent of Gen Zers believe racial equality is a defining issue of their generation.11

    • Only around 12 percent of Gen Zers trust their country’s leadership.7

    • 59 percent of Gen Zers feel their voices go unheard by their country’s leaders.7

    • 64 percent of Gen Zers don’t see their country’s leadership as making progress on issues that are important to them.7

    • 61 percent of Gen Zs believe brands are better positioned than governments to solve social problems14

    • 71 percent of Gen Z sees access to healthcare as being important to its future.7

    • 59 percent of Gen Z is in favor of some form of gun control.7

    • 57 percent of Gen Z perceives immigration as an important issue.7

    • 38 percent of Gen Zs are concerned about data privacy.7

    • 62 percent believe increasing racial/ethnic diversity is good for society.12 

    • 64 percent believe one key issue of their time is addressing gender inequality.11 

    • 62 percent think tackling poverty is a driving issue.11

    • Roughly 57 percent of Gen Zers are concerned about income inequality.11

    • 60 percent of Gen Zers want their job to impact the planet positively in some way. 3

    • 35 percent of Gen Zers personally know someone who describes themselves using a gender-neutral pronoun.12 

    • 72 percent of Gen Zers plan on getting married in the future.7

    • 70 percent of Gen Zs plan on having children in the future.7

    • Over half of Gen Z believes that same-sex marriage makes society better.12  

    • 53 percent of Gen Zers believe interracial marriage is good for society.12  

    • 40 percent of Gen Z feels comfortable sharing its political opinions on social media.7

    • 12 percent of Gen Zers voice their political opinions by taking part in marches or protests.7

    • 35 percent of Gen Zs believe marijuana should be legalized outright, while another 50 percent believe marijuana should be legalized for medicinal purposes only.7

    • Among environmental issues that are most important to Gen Zs, 85 percent cite “pollution,” whereas 87 percent cite "global warming/climate change".7

    Sources cited

    1IBM and National Retail Federation report: “Gen Z brand relationships: authenticity matters

    UNiDAYS and Ad Age: “Gen Z: Decoding the digital generation”

    3Kantar Millward Brown: "Ad reaction: Gen Z, Y and X"

    4The Center for Generational Kinetics: “The state of Gen Z 2018”

    5IBM report: “Uniquely Gen Z: What brands should know about today’s youngest consumers

    6Millennial Marketing: The real figure of direct Gen Z spending

    7UNiDAYS and Ad Age: “Gen Z: Preparing to face the future” 

    8Wibbitz: “How to reach audiences with social video: from Millennials to Generation Z”

    9 UNiDAYS: “Gen Z Insights: Zs and money: What you need to know”

    10 UNiDAYS and Ad Age: “Meet Gen Z: The traveling generation”

    11Barkley and FutureCast study: “Getting to know Gen Z: How the pivotal generation is different than Millennials”

    12Pew Research Center: “Gen Z looks a lot like Millennials in key social and political trends”

    13VisionCritical: Unlike Millennials: 5 ways Gen Z differs from Gen Y

    14 UNiDAYS: “Gen Z and belief-driven buying survey” (coming soon)

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